After years traveling with a professional figure skating show as trainer and choreographer, Katie’s about to retire, return home, and buy an ice rink to start her own training centre. But first, a last show, in a small European country called San Senova, where King Alex is in his 3rd year reigning a country founded on the holiday – like, literally on Christmas Eve, yet he struggles to express any holiday cheer.
Brace yourself: Katie and Alex are going to fall in love. But how, if she was on her way home to New Jersey? Well, Alex has a young daughter who is also a figure skater. And so Katie gets hired to choreograph an ice-skating retelling of their country’s founding, which Princess Christina has devised to prevent her father from being known as ‘the grinch king’ for the fourth year running.
Anyway, if Katie is able to resist the urge to stay in a palace, she can’t say no to royal money. This movie has it all: royalty, those spandex figure skating outfits, a gift-giving guide, crafting, dead mothers, even soap-opera-level cliff-hanger gasps. And if one love story doesn’t suit you, how about two? Yes, Christmas At The Palace is so crowd-pleasing, even the second bananas fall in love.
Clearly there is a market for Christmas movies in castles. Holidays AND romance aren’t enough anymore. In the era of Kate and Megan, we need a possibility of becoming a princess in order to feel. Luckily, Hallmark’s just leaving their palace set up year-round and they’re filming holiday special after holiday special in one unknown but lookalike European castle after another.
This movie, like most on the Hallmark channel, is an old sweater. It’s comforting because it never surprises you.